Vitamin D

The Healthy Body Pak is 90 for Life

The Healthy Body Pak ™ is the minimum nutritional supplement combination that ensures you get "The Mighty 90" vitamins & minerals. It's also referred to as "The 90 for Life", formulated by Dr. Joel Wallach.

Your body needs 90 essential nutrients

True health and wellness is only possible if it radiates from a solid, fundamentally-sound center. There is a core group of 90 essential nutrients that have the most positive effect in bringing vibrant health to the body’s complex multi-dimensional systems.

Happy & Healthy with Start Pak Nutrition

Did you know that only 8-12% of the typical nutritional supplements available today are actually absorbed by your body? That means that approximately 90% of typical supplements are flushed down the drain.

Youngevity’s supplements are 90-98% absorbable! Why is there such a difference? The secret is our exclusive source of plant-derived minerals that dramatically increase bioavailability (absorbability).

"Every man, woman and child needs 90 essential nutrients just to survive, much less to thrive. To put the odds in your favor to live as long as possible, with the highest possible quality of life, you must get these nutrients every day.”

~ Joel Wallach, BS, DVM, ND

What are the 90 Essential Nutrients?


60 Minerals

Calcium, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium, Sodium, Chloride, Sulfur, Cobalt, Copper, Aluminum, Arsenic, Barium, Beryllium, Boron, Bromine, Carbon, Iodine, Iron, Manganese, Selenium, Zinc, Cerium, Cesium, Chromium, Dysprosium, Erbium, Europium, Gadolinium, Gallium, Germanium, Gold, Hafnium, Holmium, Hydrogen, Lanthanum, Lithium, Lutetium, Molybdenum, Neodymium, Nickel, Niobium, Nitrogen, Oxygen, Praseodymium, Rhenium, Rubidium, Samarium, Scandium, Silica, Silver, Strontium, Tantalum, Terbium, Thulium, Tin, Titanium, Vanadium, Ytterbium, Yttrium, Zirconium

2-3 Essential Fatty Acids

Omega 3, Omega 6, Omega 9

16 Vitamins

Vitamin A, Vitamin B1, Vitamin B2, Vitamin B3, Vitamin B5, Vitamin B6, Vitamin B12, Vitamin C, Vitamin D, Vitamin E, Vitamin K, Biotin, Choline, Flavonoids (Bioflavonoids), Folic Acid, Inositol

12 Amino Acids

Valine, Lysine, Threonine, Leucine, Isoleucine, Tryptophan, Phenylalanine, Methionine, Histidine, Arginine, Taurine, Tyrosine

Bioavailability

Youngevity's Plant Derived Minerals™ are extracted from humic shale, which is a layer of earth formed from ancient, mineral-laden plants. Humic shale is superior to other commonly-used supplement sources such as bentonite (ground up clay) or dried sea beds (ground up rocks).

As in plants, Plant Derived Minerals™ have a natural negative electrical charge that has two important benefits. First, it may enhance the transport and bioavailability of other nutrients, and second, it may support the body’s natural detoxification of toxins and heavy metals.

Youngevity has formulated dozens of comprehensive health "Paks". From weight loss to blood sugar balance to cardiovascular health to bone and joint health, the Paks are here to take out the guesswork and provide you with turn key nutritional solutions to your health goals.

Healthy Body Start Paks - Original or 2.0 for weight loss, bones and joints, digestion, brain & heart, blood sugar, athletes, anti-aging, on-the-go paks and more.

Healthy Body Start Pak 2.0

BTT 2.0 Citrus Peach Fusion - 480g canister (1) EFA PLUS™- 90 soft gels (1) and NEW Beyond Osteo-fx™ powder - 357g Canister (1).
Healthy Body Start Pak™ 2.0

BTT 2.0 Tablets (Pwd)

Beyond Tangy Tangerine® 2.0 Tablets – 120 tablets (1), Ultimate EFA PLUS™ - 90 soft gels (1) and Beyond Osteo-fx™ powder - 357 g canister (1).
BTT 2.0 Tablets (Pwd)

Anti-Aging Healthy Body Pak 2.0

BTT 2.0 Citrus Peach Fusion -450g canister (1), EFA PLUS™-90 soft gels (1), Beyond Osteo-fx™ powder - 357g Canister (1) and Cell Shield RTQ™-60 capsules.
Anti-Aging Healthy Body Pak™ 2.0

Healthy Body Bone and Joint Pak 2.0

BTT 2.0 Citrus Peach Fusion-480g canister (1), EFA PLUS™- 90 soft gels (1), Beyond Osteo-fx™ powder-357g Canister (1), Gluco-Gel™ 240 capsules (1) and CM Cream™ 2 oz (1).
Healthy Body Bone and Joint Pak™ 2.0

Healthy Body Weight Loss Pak 2.0


BTT 2.0 Citrus Peach Fusion - 480g canister (1), EFA PLUS™- 90 soft gels (1), Beyond Osteo-fx™ powder - 357g Canister (1) and Slender Fx™ REV™ (1).
Healthy Body Weight Loss Pak™ 2.0

Healthy Body Start Pak 2.0 Liquid

BTT 2.0 Citrus Peach Fusion - 480g canister (1), EFA PLUS™- 90 soft gels (1) and Beyond Osteo-Fx™ Liquid - 32 oz (1).
Healthy Body Start Pak™ 2.0 Liquid

BTT 2.0 Tablets (Liq)

Beyond Tangy Tangerine® 2.0 Tablets – 120 Tablets (1), Ultimate EFA PLUS™- 90 soft gels (1) and Beyond Osteo-fx™ - 32 fl. oz. (1).
BTT 2.0 Tablets (Liq)

Healthy Body Athletic Pak 2.0


BTT 2.0 Citrus Peach Fusion - 480g canister (1), EFA PLUS™-90 soft gels (1), Beyond Osteo-fx™ powder-357g Canister (1), Rebound fx™ 30ct Stick Pack (1) and Ultimate Gluco-Gel™ – 120 Capsules (1).
Healthy Body Athletic Pak™ 2.0

Healthy Body Brain and Heart Pak 2.0

BTT 2.0 Citrus Peach Fusion -480g canister (1), EFA PLUS™-90 gels (1), Beyond Osteo-fx™ powder-357g Canister (1), Ultimate EFA™ (1) and Ultimate Selenium™(1).
Healthy Body Brain and Heart Pak™ 2.0

BTT Basic 90 Pak

Beyond Tangy Tangerine® (420g canister) and Ultimate EFA™ - 60 softgels (1).
BTT Basic 90 Pak™

Healthy Body Start Pak - Original

Beyond Tangy Tangerine® - 420g canister (1), EFA PLUS™- 90 soft gels (1) and Beyond Osteo-fx™ - 32 oz (1).
Healthy Body Start Pak™ - Original

Shellfish Free Healthy Body Start Pak

Beyond Tangy Tangerine® - 420g canister (1), ULTIMATE MULTI-EFA™ - 90 soft gels (1) and BEYOND OSTEO-FX™- 32 oz (1).
Shellfish Free Healthy Body Start Pak™

Healthy Body Blood Sugar Pak 2.0


BTT 2.0 Citrus Peach Fusion - 480g canister (1), EFA PLUS™- 90 soft gels (1), Beyond Osteo-fx™ powder - 357g Canister (1) and Slender FX™ Sweet Eze™ (1).
Healthy Body Blood Sugar Pak™ 2.0

Healthy Body Digestion Pak 2.0


BTT 2.0 Citrus Peach Fusion-480g canister (1), EFA PLUS™-90 soft gels (1), Beyond Osteo-fx™ powder-357g Canister (1), Ultimate Enzymes® (1) and Ultimate Flora fx™ (1).
Healthy Body Digestion Pak™ 2.0

On-The-Go Healthy Body Start Pak

30 packets, each includes: BTT 2.0 (4 tablets), Ultimate Mineral Caps™ (1 capsule), Ultimate CAL® (1 capsule) and Ultimate EFA Plus™ (1 soft-gel).
On-The-Go Healthy Body Start Pak™

Posted by postmaster in Youngevity

Healthy Mushrooms

By Ben Fuchs | Pharmacist Ben

(PharmacistBen) Next to supplements, nothing contains more nourishment value per gram of edible material than superfoods which WebMD defines as “multitasking food substances that provide multiple disease-fighting nutrients”. Although a quick internet search will reveal dozens of various foods that claim superfood status including eggs, yogurt, algae and various fruits and vegetables none can boast more nutritional value than the humble, crepuscular and manure-munching mushroom.

Healthy Mushrooms

Chris 73 via Wikimedia Commons

Mushrooms and their uncouth and downright toxic cousins called toadstools (“tod” is the German word for death) are neither plant or animal or bacteria, and instead fall into a separate classification called fungi. They are botanically referred to as “fruiting bodies”, a plant structure that produces spores, which can be thought of as a type of seed specific to fungus and molds.

Mushrooms are members of one of the six great kingdoms of life, the Fungi (the others are the Plant, Animal, Archaeal, Protistal and the Bacterial), and like their fungal cousins, the molds and yeasts they contain tremendous medicinal value. And, although many are inedible and some deadly, the nutritional relevance of edible mushrooms appreciated by culinary types as a delicacy since ancient times, is off the charts.

The most important of their nutrient elements are a type of non-sweet sugar called polysaccharides which compose the bulk of the solid portion of the typical mushrooms. Polysaccharides can be thought of long chains of repeating and identical chemical chunks that form a cage-type network that allows them to effectively trap water. This ability to hydrate itself in what is essentially a sponge-like fashion, accounts for the characteristic gel like texture of the typical mushroom. One of these polysaccharides, a substance called chitin, which gives the mushroom cell a certain solidity and structure, is regarded as one of the most common organic molecules in the natural world, second in abundance only to its chemical cousin cellulose which provides a similar structural support for the cells of plants.

The mushroom’s polysaccharides also are responsible for many of the important health benefits associated with mushrooms, most especially when it comes to fighting cancer. In fact there is no food that has ever been shown to have more anti-carcinogenic effects, and their tumour fighting properties have been exploited by medical men throughout history. They’re a mainstay of ancient Chinese anti-cancer medicine and even today modern medicine has come to appreciate the significant t immune boosting properties of the simple fungi. In a 2012 article published in the journal Food and Function, mushrooms were described as having evident clinical (anti-tumour) results and having the ability to activate numerous human immune cancer destroying cells of the human immune system, including white blood cells and natural killer cells. But polysaccharides do more than strengthen immunity and fight cancer. One in particular called beta glucan has been used for everything from improving liver health to lowering blood fats and fighting wrinkles. Its wonderfully sun protective and I’ve formulated many a sun protecting skin care product with it. It’s particularly effective in eye creams.

Mushrooms are also an important and rare source of vegan friendly Vitamin D. Typically only found in animal foods, Vitamin D has powerful immune strengthening properties of its own. And as it turns out Vitamin D from mushrooms, although not as long acting as Vitamin D3 animal version, is absorbed as effectively. Keeping in mind the best Vitamin comes from the reaction between skin cholesterol and the sun, food based vitamin D from animal products or mushrooms can be an important secondary source. And vitamin D does more than boost the immune system and fight cancer. Adequate levels in the blood can help prevent heart disease, diabetes and immune disorders, the big 3 causes of degenerative disease and an early demise.

Mushrooms are also a source of other helpful nutrients including the B-vitamins, Vitamin C, and helpful non nutrients like nerve cell growth factors for improving brain health and anti-microbials to fight viruses and bacteria’s. When you include the easy to absorb minerals like magnesium and potassium which are especially easy to absorb in their mushroom form, and fibers with blood sugar stabilizing and hormone balancing properties, it’s hard to imagine a more nutrient dense superfood than the simple little mushroom.
Four most common medicinal mushrooms:

Maitake Mushrooms – mineral rich mushroom, often found growing on the bottom of trees supports immune system health, used to treat cancer supports healthy blood sugar and provides cardiovascular health benefits.

Reishi Mushrooms – One of the oldest of the medicinal mushrooms; use recorded in Chinese medical texts as early as 200 BC, and handbooks on Reishi were the first illustrated publications in the history of Chinese mushroom medicine. High concentration of medicinal elements including blood thinning compounds and plant steroids give Reishi a bitter taste that makes them difficult to eat but when sipped on as a pre-meal tea, the same bitter qualities can help improve secretion bile, enzymes and stomach acid for digestive health benefits.

Shitake Mushrooms – One of the tastiest of medicinal mushrooms considered to be the most popular gourmet mushroom in the world. Produces high amounts of Vitamin D3 when exposed to sunlight. Detoxification properties being studied for removal of heavy metals and hydrocarbon (oil spill) contamination from soil.

Cordyceps – The athletes mushroom; Cordyceps supplements used by Chinese Olympians for its respiratory and oxygenation support properties. Loaded with anti-oxidants and prized for its anti-aging and adaptogenic (biochemistry stabilizing) properties, may stimulate libido and improve male sexual performance. Contains sedative properties that can be leveraged as in a soothing, sleep promoting bedtime tea.

Posted by Ben Fuchs in Health

About Hormones and Hormone Problems

I had just finished a talk, and as usual, folks were milling around looking to get some questions answered. A woman named Nancy steps out of the crowd. She’s in her early 50’s with a whole slew of symptoms that I’ve heard many times before; Hot flashes, night sweats, insomnia, and anxiety. Her moods are swinging like a cheap screen door in a winter storm and loss of libido may end her marriage. She’s carrying an extra 30 pounds of body weight, and no matter how she changes her diet, she can’t drop them.

Hormones and Hormone ProblemsShe, of course, knows it’s her hormones. At least that’s what she tells me. But when I ask her what exactly she means by hormones she really can’t come up with much of an answer. That’s because she has little understanding of what is meant by this catch-all term “hormones”, and Nancy isn’t alone. Women like Nancy come up to me after every presentation that I do. I receive letters, take phone calls, and answer texts and messages on this subject many times a week.

Modern scientific understanding of hormones is over a hundred years old, but do a random survey amongst your non-medical friends to see how many people could really explain what a hormone is and/or what it does. Probably not many, if any. How can we really understand how to address hormone related health issues without having a basic grasp of what these things are and how they work.

In order to understand hormones, we have to understand cells which are best thought of as little extraordinary animals. Each one of these creepy-crawly blobs of goo, so tiny it takes 1000 to make an inch, is studded with hundreds of thousands of sub-microscopic switches called receptors. When these switches are activated, stuff happens.

A hormone is nothing more than a chemical that activates those switches. It’s a bit more complicated in the sense that there are different hormones for different switches and because combinations of hormonal switches get activated simultaneously, but, in essence, it’s just a question of switches and chemicals, i.e. the hormones that activate them.

Because the body’s functions all result from the activities of cells, if it’s happening in the body, it’s happening because of hormones. Hormones can be thought of as messages; the very word “hormone” is Latin for: “I arouse to activity”. That means that we are healthy (or not) because of hormones. In fact, from a physical perspective, we are everything we are because of hormones. To say you have a hormone problem when you are sick is like saying you have a money problem when you’re broke. Or a mechanical problem if your car breaks down. Of course, it’s true, but it’s tautological (saying the same thing twice in different words) and not helpful for taking care of the problem.

We have two major types of hormones. One type is fast-acting and rapidly broken down. These are substances that activate quick biochemical functions such as nerve firings, muscle contractions, and various secretions in response to food or some kind of irritant. These quick acting hormones have names like “prostaglandins” and “leukotrienes,” and they live fast and die young. They allow cells to respond to their environment in a speedy fashion, and they’re quickly broken down. In the brain, these hormone chemicals are called neurotransmitters, and they’re associated with various moods and brain functions.
When most people talk about hormones and hormone problems, most of the time they are referring to the second type, more long acting hormone substances called steroids, typically the so-called male hormone testosterone and the so-called female hormone estrogen. I say “so-called” because it’s somewhat of a misunderstanding to refer to these hormones in this sex-specific fashion as both genders produce both substances. Nonetheless, despite the fact that there are dozens upon dozens of various hormone substances in the body, when women blame their hormones, they’re usually referring to estrogen; likewise, when males talk about theirs, they typically mean testosterone.

So, if you’re a guy or a gal and you want to work on your hormones (testosterone or estrogen), what can you do? Well, probably the most important step you can take to return these two steroid substances back to their appropriate levels and potency is pay attention to intake of fatty foods and fat absorption. Steroid hormones are all derived from cholesterol which is a major component of fat-dense foods like eggs and dairy and organ meats, so making sure you’re getting enough of these types of foods can be helpful. You, of course, want to make sure that you’re absorbing these substances in the intestine as well. That means after you eat your omelet, cheese, and liver, you use digestive enzymes, lecithin, and apple cider vinegar– all of which can improve the body’s ability to absorb and utilize their cholesterol content.

Nutrients can help too. Below are 13 nutritional supplements that can help improve steroid hormone health:

Probiotics – 10 billion units/multiple strains daily
Magnesium Chelate -1000-2000mg daily
B-100 Complex – 2-3 tablets daily
Vitamin C -1000-3000mg daily
Omega-3’s – 1-2 grams daily
Evening Primrose Oil – 1-2 teaspoonsful daily
Zinc Picolinate – 50mg daily
Selenium Chelate -400mcg daily
Vitamin A -20,000 iu daily
Vitamin E -400 iu daily
Vitamin D – Sunlight 5000 iu daily
Pregnenolone -100mg daily
Choline – 100-200mg daily

 

Posted by Ben Fuchs in Health

Asthma Epidemic

By Ben Fuchs | Pharmacist Ben

Get ready for another epidemic! According an article posted on cnn.com the annual “September Asthma Epidemic” (their words, not mine) is coming, although the only evidence they cite are clinical studies that have shown the greatest number of hospitalization due to asthmatic attack are highest 17 days after labor day. Whether an epidemic is on the way or not may be up to conjecture, but what is not debatable is the well-documented fact that asthma is a big and getting bigger problem. From 2001 to 2010, the asthma incidence increased almost 15 percent. By 2009, asthma accounted for nearly 3,400 deaths, nearly 480,000 hospitalizations, 1.9 million emergency department visits, and 8.9 million physician office visits.

Asthma Epidemic

By BruceBlaus (Own work), via Wikimedia Commons

Asthma, which affects almost 13 percent of adults, and over 29 million Americans at least once in their lives is best thought as an inflammatory condition of the airways. The airways are the passageways where air, or more specifically oxygen, gets transferred into the blood. The net effect is an obstruction or a blockade of oxygen which causes the wheezing and shortness of breath, and a sense of suffocation that occurs with a asthmatic attack. The key word in the above description is inflammatory, which alludes to the microscopic blockages where inhaled oxygen from the air we breathe is transferred to the blood.

And inflammation? Well, that’s always the manifestation of a jacked-up immune system. ALWAYS! I can think of no more fundamental concept in all of physical health. Inflammation is the way a defensive (immune) response shows up; a defensive response to some kind of stressor. And a defensive/stress response means something is getting into the body or something is happening to the body that the body perceives as an attack. In order for a DEFENES-ive response to be initiated there has to be a preceding OFFENSE-ive agent; And the main routes for an offensive agent to get into the body for a defensive response to be triggered, such as those observed with an ordinary asthmatic attack, are typically through the lungs (they are breathed in) or the digestive system (they are eaten). In the case of exercise induced asthma the stress results from the need to heat and humidify large amounts of air that enter into the lungs during exercise.

So what’s an asthmatic to do? Though the medical treatments of choice are inhalers, which are usually some kind of steroid type drug or a nervous system agent that dumbs down respiratory responsiveness or suppresses immunity. Pharmacological intervention is not without toxicity or side effects. The questions for asthmatics are: Do you really want to suppress the immune system that is so essential for protecting the body from the environment assaults, animate and inanimate Or, do you really want to dial down your nervous system that distributes the electrical energy that runs our bodies and brains?

In my opinion the best way to deal with asthma is to take a healthy, natural and multi-pronged approach. In the case of asthmatic attacks that are directly caused by something you’re eating, obviously you want to eliminate those kinds of foods. Dairy and grains are likely suspects. Sometimes legumes, including peanuts and soy, can be problematic. Even vegetables can induce an asthmatic attack in those who are predisposed. Be especially careful of the nightshades which include tomatoes, potatoes, eggplants and peppers.

In addition to avoiding foods that can trigger asthmatic attacks it’s important to reduce the load on the immune system, from non-triggering substances that simply burden the immune system without directly causing respiratory symptoms. If there are predisposing immune loads(mostly problem foods), these can contribute to the signs of inhalation asthma albeit without directly causing asthmatic symptomology. Even if it doesn’t seem like there is a connection between foods and asthmatic symptoms, foods can still PREDISPOSE even if they don’t immediately CAUSE an asthmatic attack. This is kind of tricky, because the connection between predisposing factors that weaken the immune system or burden the immune AND immediate triggers might not be obvious. You might think your asthmatic symptoms are the result of exposure to pollen, not realizing that the pollen is merely the trigger and the cause is really an overburdened immune system that is struggling to keep up with food allergens or toxins that are getting into the body on a regular basis, even if they are not causing immediate symptoms or problems. I call it the “straw-that-breaks-the-camel’s-back” effect where the inhaled substance is not the actual cause but merely the “straw-that-breaks-the-camel’s-back”. What’s worse, if you have an immune system that is burning through nutrients or if you are malnourished, either because you’re not absorbing or nor getting nutrients this undernutriation can also be a contributing factor.

Look for other indicators of immune activation. Skin problems, rashes, frequent colds, autoimmune disease are all signs. If you have any of these symptoms associate with them foods and eliminate those foods. And if you don’t have any of those symptoms, then look for digestive difficulties. And really look. Bowel movement issues and gas are especially good clues. So is heart burn. If you have any of these symptoms connect them to food and eliminate those foods. This will decrease the burden on the immune system and reduce the “straw-that-breaks-the camel’s-back-effect”.

And don’t forget to add in the digestive support nutrients including probiotics, digestive enzymes with food, glutamine powder, juices of aloe vera and noni. There are also important nutrients for the lungs and blood and immune system. Magnesium is an asthmatic’s best nutritional friend. It can help relax constricted blood vessels and strengthen the immune system too; use 1000-2000mg of the glycinate form. Vitamin C is especially important for lung health. I’d be using 100-5000 mg a day. Vitamin E is also an important respiratory nutrient. Use the tocotrienol form, 400 IU daily, for best results. Vitamin E’s cousin, CoQ10 can be helpful, use the oil soluble gel-caps and take 100mg a day. And don’t forget about Vitamin D which can provide respiratory health benefits and beef up a burdened immune system. Sun exposure is always the best way to get your Vitamin D, but if you prefer to go the supplement route, take 5,000 to 10,000 IU. And always balance out your Vitamin D supplementation with Vitamin A, which can provide its own respiratory health benefits. I’d be taking 20,000 IU of Vitamin A at least 4 or 5 days a week. It’s stored in liver so missing a day or two isn’t going to hurt. Don’t forget your EFAs especially Omega-3 s from fish oil which can have wonderfully beneficial benefits for addressing the inflammation associated with asthma. Finally, in addition to supporting digestive health, probiotics can strengthen the immune system and keep it from being so sensitive and jumpy. Take 80 billion units a day and look for products that contain multiple strains of good bacteria.

Posted by Ben Fuchs in Health

Skin Cells Making Vitamin D

By Ben Fuchs | Pharmacist Ben

These days anyone with even the slightest interest in nutrition knows that skin cells are capable of making vitamin D. But there’s a lot more to the story than that! The skin and skin cells are the sites for a lot of interesting chemistry. In addition to being just plain fascinating, knowing about it can have practical health benefits.

Skin Cells Making Vitamin D

By Daniel de Souza Telles (File:HumanSkinDiagram.xcf), via Wikimedia Commons

When we think of skin cells making vitamin D, typically we think of the vitamin D that is distributed throughout the body, and for good reason. After skin cells make vitamin D, the blood and the lymphatic system suck much of it away and send it down to the liver for initial activation. Then to the kidney for final activation, and ultimately to the general circulation for use throughout the body. But as it turns out skin cells don’t only make Vitamin D for the rest of the body, they also make it for themselves. They don’t just make it, they listen to it too! In other words, they are sensitive to the presence of the vitamin D they make. In addition to the aforementioned stabilization of their growth and control of their differentiation, Vitamin D can also reduce and stabilize the secretion of inflammatory factors. Skin cells that are not differentiating properly and also dividing, squirt out chemicals that alert the immune system. This causes the inflammation that is associated with the plaques of psoriasis. Vitamin D, via its secretion stabilizing effect on the fast growing immature skin cells can also have anti-inflammatory benefits.

Here is something else interesting about the skin and Vitamin D. For the most part, the liver and the kidneys are the two main sites of vitamin D activation. However, recently it has come to the attention of researchers that skin cells can activate vitamin D, too! The exact same chemistry that activates Vitamin D in the liver, and then super activates it in the kidney, occurs in the skin as well. In fact, there is more activation chemistry in skin cells than there is in any other cells of the body. All of this means that skin cells are the only cells in the entire body, where every single thing can happen, that can happen to Vitamin D. Skin cells can make Vitamin D, they can process Vitamin D, they can use Vitamin D, and they can activate vitamin D. What’s more, the skin will make more vitamin D as it needs more Vitamin D, as long as it’s in the presence of the sun. And it makes less when it needs less. The presence of vitamin D acts as a negative feedback stimulus that slows down further production. And conversely, the absence of Vitamin D acts as a trigger to increase production. Just another example of the incredible, built in, intelligence of the cells that comprise the human body. All of this is to say the skin route, i.e; activation of the skin cells’ Vitamin D manufacturing “machinery” by the sun, is ALWAYS going to be the best way to make sure you have enough of this critical biochemical . This is extra especially true if you have liver or kidney issues, digestive issues, your gall bladder removed, have diabetes or any kind of blood sugar issues; all of which can affect the liver and kidneys.

Here is something else interesting. The vitamin D made by the skin cells, turns around and stimulates the cells that made it to make anti-cancer compounds like something called Tumor Necrosis Factor (TNF). Necrosis is a medical term for death, and that’s what TNF is to cancer cells. TNF kills cancer! Skin cell produced Vitamin D also stimulates the production of interferon, a second potent anti-cancer chemical. That means the more sun exposure you get the more Vitamin D your skin cells make, and the more Vitamin D your skin cells make, the more anti-cancer skin protective compounds your skin cells produce. And as if that weren’t enough, Vitamin D is actually a natural sunscreen that not only screens the body from UV radiation better than any sunscreen you can put in a pharmacy, but unlike store bought sunscreens, it has no toxicity. It is especially protective against DNA and RNA damage, it permits solar induced Vitamin D production to continue, and it provides the body with immune enhancing anti-cancer benefits too!

Posted by Ben Fuchs in Skin Care

Cholesterol and the Steroid Hormones

By Ben Fuchs | Pharmacist Ben

The human body is a roiling, seething, cauldron of chemistry. An apparently solid mass, which is in reality composed of and home to hundreds of trillions of endlessly morphing molecules and many thousands of different biochemical entities, none more important than the misunderstood, much maligned and massively functional molecule called cholesterol.

Cholesterol and the Steroid Hormones

By David Richfield (User:Slashme) and Mikael Häggström], via Wikimedia Commons

Cholesterol is THE key chemical entity of the human body. It distinguishes animals from plants (which do not make cholesterol), and plays and important part in muscle health, a well- functioning brain and nervous system and in helping maintain the moisturization and barrier properties of the skin. Yet of all the roles cholesterol plays in the helping sustaining the heath of the organism, none is more important than its parental responsibilities. Yes, cholesterol is a matriarch, a parent chemical that “gives birth” to many children.

The children of cholesterol are known as the steroid hormones. And the steroid hormones are the elites of the society of biochemicals. They regulate (i.e. control) many of the chemical reactions in the body. The cholesterol family is known for being hard working and very important in the society of the body. A couple of the offspring are Cortisol and Estrogen. These cholesterol children support the body in times of stress. Then there’s the virile and manly child Testosterone which is responsible for much of the body’s growth and repair. Pregnenolone and DHEA are cholesterol kids that are important for keeping the body happy and strong and resistant to disease. And perhaps the most potent and powerful cholesterol child, the one who has really made a name for himself in terms of impact is called Cholecalciferol, or as it’s more commonly known as Vitamin D. Thus, cholesterol is a parent, a chemical jumping off point, for many of the most important chemicals in the body. It is important stuff and a biological must-have.

Yet, sometimes the body’s cholesterol making machinery makes more than it needs. How much is too much, no one knows, (those silly cholesterol tests that measure HDL and LDL are based on correlations and statistics created by pharmaceutical companies that profit off the scores they invent) but the fact is that elevated cholesterol levels are associated with a leading cause of disease: dysglycemia and diabetes. But association is not cause. In fact, although elevated cholesterol levels are associated with diabetes it’s not the cause of messed up blood sugar, but rather an effect. This should come as no surprise. Biochemical breakdowns in blood sugar control messes up ALL of the body’s chemistry. Excessive cholesterol synthesis is an effect of poor blood sugar control. When you correct blood sugar and lower insulin secretion by changing the way you eat (basically eating less sweets, cereals, breads, pasta and potatoes among other sugar-rich foods) cholesterol synthesis slows down. It happens EVERY time! That’s because cholesterol synthesis is up-regulated as a result of the body being tricked by the intake of a high-calorie high sugar diet. These types of foods fool the body into initiating the processes of building cells and substance. And cells and substances require cholesterol.

In essence, excessive amounts of cholesterol are produced because of our lousy lifestyle choices. And, as always when it comes to lifestyle induced biochemical breakdowns, this is good news because we can fix the breakdowns simply by making better choices. Without drugs or doctors or health insurance. Reduce your intake of fast burning, high calorie carbs and your cholesterol levels will drop like a stone. And, it wouldn’t hurt to make sure you’re taking nutritional supplements that help the body process carbohydrates. Using niacin (200-500 mg timed release a day) and thiamine (500mg a day in divided doses) and chromium (200-600mcg daily, taken after meals) and magnesium (the glycinate form is best, try 1200mg daily) can help support sugar metabolism and they’ll help lower cholesterol as well. As a bonus you’ll lose weight and lower your blood pressure and reduce your risks of degenerative disease of all kinds and probably live longer too.

Posted by Ben Fuchs in Health

Ten Ways to Lower Blood Pressure without Medication

By Ben Fuchs | Pharmacist Ben

Top Ten non-medical Tools to lower to lower blood pressure quickly:
#1 Reduce intake of foods that raise blood sugar and insulin. Potatoes, flour, cereal, pastries desserts are probably best avoided. Fruit juices and fruits aren’t so great either.

#2 Use insulin supporting nutritional supplements. The B-Complex is important and B3, Niacin is especially so. Consider taking several B-100 capsules daily; using the Beyond Tangy Tangerine and taking 100-20mg of TIMED RELEASE Niacin daily.

#3 Vitamin C not only has blood pressure lowering properties, but it plays a key role in strengthening blood vessels. Take 1000 to 5000 mg daily powdered in water; best to sip slowly

#4 Magnesium has multiple benefits for the cardiovascular system, not to mention the liver lungs brain and adrenal glands. Use 1000-2000 mg of Magnesium glycinate daily. All green leafy vegetables have magnesium

#5 Speaking of green leafys, make sure you’re eating lots of veggies. Veggie juices can be helpful too. Use a vitamix type blender so you don’t lose the fiber. Vegetables contain electrolytes that play a key role in keeping the blood pressure healthy. Think 1 pound of vegetables for every 50 pounds of body weight

#7 Coenzyme Q-10 is one of the most important of all cardiovascular supplements. I would be doing 100-200mg of the oil soluble capsules. They’re a bit pricey but well worth it. It’s great for the heart and liver and if you’re on a statin drug you’re ability take your own CoQ10 will be compromised. CoQ10 levels drop with age, so everyone should be supplementing as they get older.

#8 Lay out in the sun, (but don’t even come close to burning). Vitamin D can have a significant effect on lowering blood pressure.

#9 Omega-3s can be helpful and both fish oil and seed oils have their benefits. Both can thin the blood which will reduce pressure and help maintain fluidity. And lignins from flax have blood pressure lowering properties while Vitamin D from fish oil can support anti hypertension.

#10 And don’t forget to breathe. Slow deep breathing can have a rapid affect on lowering blood pressure. High blood pressure is a manifestation of the body’s generic response to stress. It indicates activation of the sympathetic (stress) nervous system. Deep breathing is the fastest way to attenuate to attenuate this sympathetic (stress) response. That means in addition to lowering blood pressure it support blood pressure health indirectly via other mechanisms. It can relieve anxiety and psychological stress. It can help you fall asleep too. And if you have issues with constipation it’s a great way to relax your bowels. All of these benefits can provide anti-hypertensive benefits. Make sure you’re breathing SLOWLY and DEEPLY into the lower part of your belly. If you can do three or 4 breaths a minute, 7 second inhale 7 second exhale or 10 second inhale and 10 second exhale.

Ten Ways to Lower Blood Pressure

Omron 7 Series Wrist Blood Pressure Monitor

Hypertension is a chronic elevation of blood pressure that affects at least 80 million Americans and increases their risk for strokes, aneurysms (burst blood vessels), and heart attacks. And that’s not all. Every single one of the 100 trillion cells in the human body is intimately dependent of the movement of blood through circulatory vessels. That means increases in blood pressure can have deleterious effects on the health of the brain, the kidney, the liver and the lungs among other organs and systems. . According to Dr. Sherry Rogers, writing in the book The Blood Pressure Hoax, 53 percent of deaths can be attributed at least in part to hypertension and high blood pressure triples the chances of an early demise.

Normal blood pressure which can be defined as the pressure or tension exerted on arterial walls as the blood circulates through the vessels is measures in a binary reading where the first number (the systolic measurement) indicates the arterial wall pressure as the heart is pumping and the second number refers to the pressure on the artery wall as the heart is relaxed (the diastolic measurement). Blood pressure readings are considered to be one of the most vital indicators of health and visit to a medical professional that will not include one. The standard unit of measurement is done millimeters of mercury and the desired range for normal adult is around 90-119 mm Hg (systolic) over 60-79 (diastole).

If you go to a physician and he determines that you have an elevated blood pressure, chances are pretty good you’re going to end up on medication and that is not a good thing. Blood pressure medicines do not address the causes of high blood pressure and come with potential for serious side effects. In fact anti-hypertensive, while among the most prescribed of all classes of medications is also among the most toxic. Even the most benign of blood pressure lowering medications, the diuretics (e.g. Hydrochlorothiazide or HCTZ), can increase risk for electrolyte loss, elevations in blood cholesterol and fats and heart arrhythmia, which are all interesting and ironic risks for a drug that’s supposed to protect the cardiovascular system. The more powerful of the anti hypertensives, the so called calcium channel blockers and beta blockers are even worse. Lethargy, digestive health issues, hypoglycemia and sexual problems are all common side affects as well arrhythmia, slow heart beat. Heart failure is not an unheard adverse reaction for these supposedly heart cardiac benefiting medicines. And, some raise the risk of cancer. In 2010, researchers form Case University Western Reserve university announced a …”modest but significant increase” in the risk of new cancer occurrences in patients taking so- called ACE inhibitor drugs, among the most popular of all anti hypertensive’s.

If you’ve been diagnosed with high blood pressure, it’s important to recognize that drugs are not your best treatment option. In fact given the many healthful alternatives drugs shouldn’t be a Treatment option at all. As we’ve said drugs do not address the cause of the hype4rtension. And they do not come without health or dollar cost. If you have been diagnoses as hypertensive, your best is to start to employ some nutritional, dietary and even lifestyle changes immediately.

 

Blood pressure is typically recorded as two numbers, written as a ratio like this:

Systolic Diastolic Blood Pressure ExampleRead as “117 over 76 millimeters of mercury”   SystolicThe top number, which is also the higher of the two numbers, measures the pressure in the arteries when the heart beats (when the heart muscle contracts).
DiastolicThe bottom number, which is also the lower of the two numbers, measures the pressure in the arteries between heartbeats (when the heart muscle is resting between beats and refilling with blood).

What is the AHA recommendation for healthy blood pressure?

This chart reflects blood pressure categories defined by the American Heart Association.

Blood Pressure
Category
Systolic
mm Hg (upper #)
  Diastolic
mm Hg (lower #)
Normal less than 120 and less than 80
Prehypertension 120139 or 8089
High Blood Pressure
(Hypertension) Stage 1
140159 or 9099
High Blood Pressure
(Hypertension) Stage 2
160 or higher or 100 or higher
Hypertensive Crisis
(Emergency care needed)
Higher than 180 or Higher than 110
Posted by Ben Fuchs in Health

Some Thoughts on Vitamins

By Ben Fuchs | Pharmacist Ben

When the subject of nutrition comes up, oftentimes the conversational spotlight gets focused on the term vitamins, which gets tossed around as an all-inclusive, catch-all term for all nutritional supplements. In the interests of accuracy, it’s important to keep in mind that the term vitamins refers only a single component of the nutritional supplement world, which includes protein, essential fats, minerals, water, fiber, and carbohydrates, and accessory nutrients like NAC and alpha lipoic acid and probiotics.

Vitamins
The word vitamin is actually a slang term for nutritional substances that are more technically called “co-enzymes”. These being biomolecules that assist enzymes in their work of making biological chemistry happen.

The body is a seething, bubbling factory of chemical reactions. Every cell in the body, of which there are many trillions is capable of producing somewhere on the order of 10 thousand to 100 thousand chemical reactions per second!! To put it in even more dramatic, (if incomprehensible) terms there are quadrillions (!) of individual chemical reactions occurring in our bodies every minute we are alive. And each one of these chemical reactions depends on the action of enzymes and, in-turn, each one of these enzymes requires the assistance of coenzymes some of which are the vitamins. Considering most of our vitamin needs are met by foods or supplementation, in other words, they are not made by the body, the stupendous importance of making sure we are giving our body generous quantities of these critical molecules through the diet and through nutritional supplements become obvious.

There are two classes of vitamins, those that dissolve in water and those that dissolve in oil, the so-called water soluble vitamins, which are the B-complex and Vitamin C and the fat soluble vitamins, D, E, A and K. The water soluble vitamins critical as they may be are easier to work with than the fat soluble vitamins. You can and should take a lot of B-complex and vitamin C, they are multi-functional and used and excreted rapidly. The best way to make sure your getting enough of the water soluble vitamins is to take generous amounts, in water all day long, i.e. by drinking them. The fat soluble vitamins, D, E, A and K are much trickier to work with. Optimal assimilation of the substances requires a healthy and well-functioning digestive system including especially the liver and gall bladder. And, because they are transported around the body in the lymphatic system if things aren’t moving well in the lymph, fatty vitamin activity may be impaired. The same is true if you have liver problems or gall bladder problems, especially if you’ve had your gall bladder removed or if you have pancreatic health issues. If this is the case, you’re going to want to take the fatty vitamins with meals that include fatty foods. Digestive enzymes can help so can apple cider vinegar and perhaps pancreatin which contains digestive enzymes. You can also use se bile salts, maybe lecithin and you might want to consider including some choline which the body can use to make lecithin.

Take home message:

Use generous amounts of the B-complex and Vitamin C throughout the day. Put them in water or some other liquid medium and drink them down slowly for best results

Take fatty vitamin D, E, A and K supplements with meals that contain some kind of fatty foods. If you are dealing with digestive health issues i.e. those that involve the stomach, small intestine, liver, gall bladder or pancreas, you can improve the absorption of these fatty vitamins by taking them with digestive enzymes, pancreatin, bile salts, apple cider vinegar, lecithin and choline.

Posted by Ben Fuchs in Nutrition